Enikö Sonkoly

Lecturer senior

About me

Current position: Associate professor in Dermatology

Research description

My main scientific focus is to explore the role of a class of non-coding RNAs, microRNAs (miRNAs) in psoriasis, to understand their roles in regulatory pathways underlying chronic skin inflammation and to explore their potential to become therapeutic targets and biomarkers for psoriasis. Psoriasis is a common chronic inflammatory skin disease, considered as a systemic inflammatory disease with significant comorbidities.

Results from our lab strongly implicate miRNAs in the pathogenesis of psoriasis. We are currently investigating the function and therapeutic potential of miRNAs in psoriasis by (1) in vivo functional studies of psoriasis-associated miRNAs, (2) exploring psoriasis-associated pathways including miRNAs/ protein-coding transcripts (3) exploring possibilities of miRNA modulation for topical and systemic treatment. MiRNA modulation may be a promising approach for the treatment of psoriasis, or other inflammatory diseases, since miRNA modulation can affect entire pathways rather than single molecules, and miRNA inhibitors have been shown to be well-tolerated in human studies.

Another main goal for my research is the identification of miRNA-based biomarkers, which are associated with clinical phenotypes of psoriasis and response to treatments. Prediction of treatment response and diagnosis of comorbidities in psoriasis patients represent an unmet medical need, and miRNAs present in the circulation are promising candidates as minimally invasive biomarkers.


2002-2005:       PhD in immunology, Department of Dermatology, University of Szeged, Szeged, Hungary; Title of the dissertation: Identification and characterization of a novel psoriasis-susceptibility-related, non-coding RNA gene, PRINS

1999-2002:       Semmelweis University, Faculty of Medicine, Budapest, Hungary; MD

1996-1999:       University of Szeged, Faculty of Medicine, Szeged, Hungary 

Academic honours, awards and prizes

• Inflammation Europe ASPIRE 2014 research award (Pfizer) (2014) • “Future Leaders in Dermatology” Award from the European Society for Dermatological Research (2011) • MSD Dermatologistipendium (2011) • Schering-Ploughs Immunologistipendium (2009) • Fellowship of the Wenner-Gren Foundations for foreign postdoctoral researchers (2006) • Award of the “Fekete Zoltan” Foundation of the Hungarian Society for Dermatology (2005)